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Names of Modi, Shah, Rahul, Nitish and Uddhav Given as Star Campaigners for Bihar Polls

File photo of PM Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah. (PTI photo)

File photo of PM Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah. (PTI photo)

Modi and Shah will lead the campaign from the saffron party, while Kumar would be the main attraction for his JD(U). Names of NCP chief Sharad Pawar and Uddhav Thackeray have been submitted as campaigners in the October-November polls in Bihar.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, former Congress president Rahul Gandhi and Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray's names have been given as star campaigners for their respective party in the state assembly elections. The Election Commission has reduced maximum number of campaigners for the recognised parties to 30 while for the unrecognised parties it would be not more than 20 in view of coronavirus pandemic, Additional Chief Electoral Officer (ACEO) Sanjay Kumar Singh said on Friday.

The maximum number was earlier fixed at 40 for everybody. The parties will have to inform the district administration48 hours prior to launching their campaign, Singh added.

Modi and Shah will lead the campaign from the saffron party, while Kumar would be the main attraction for his JD(U). Names of NCP chief Sharad Pawar and Uddhav Thackeray have been submitted as campaigners in the October-November polls in Bihar.

Presence of Pawar and senior Thackeray besides his son Aditya Thackeray is expected to add spice to the campaign considering a tug of war between Maharashtra and Bihar governments over investigation into actor Sushant Singh Rajput's death case. Shiv Sena is contesting on 50 seats in the 243-memberassembly in Bihar, party sources said adding there is no information to the state unit so far whether Thackerays would actually come here.

Though both NCP and the Shiv Sena are neither majorplayers in the Bihar elections nor members of any significantalliances, their presence would be aimed at settling scorewith Nitish Kumar and the BJP over the Patna-born Bollywoodhero's death by suicide case probe wrangling. For the saffron party, besides Modi and Shah, names ofDefence minister Rajnath Singh and BJP president J P Nadda arebeing taken by the party leaders here who would convass forthe party nominees.

From Congress, former party president Rahul Gandhi, hissister Priyanka Vadra and chief ministers of the party ruledstates would campaign in Bihar, state party sources said here. Congress is a partner in the Grand Alliance headed by LaluPrasad's party in Bihar.

For, RJD, in the absence of party chief Lalu Prasad, hisson and the party chief ministerial candidate Tejashwi Yadavwould hold the command. Prasad is in jail in Ranchi after being convicted in fourcases of multi-crore fodder scam. Though he got bail in thecase related to illegal withdrawal of money from Chaibasatreasury, he, however, will have to remain in jail as he isserving time in another case related to Dumka.

For JD(U), in addition to Kumar, who also heads theparty, its national general secretary RCP Singh, MP RajivRanjan Singh alias Lalan Singh, JD(U) Bihar chief BashishthaNarayan Singh and working president Ashok Choudhary are amongthe star campaigners, party sources said. Sharad Pawar, his daughter and MP Supriya Sule, seniorNCP leader and former union minister Prafulla Patel, MP FauziaKhan will be among the star campaigners who will come to Biharto stump for party candidates, Bihar NCP media incharge KumarGyanendra said.

NCP is contesting 150 assembly seats in Bihar polls on its own, he said. The ACEO said that a total 1357 nomination papers were filed for the first phase of assembly polls which ended Thursday. Voting will be held for 71 seats in the first phase on October 28.

Altogether 10 persons have filed their papers online for the first phase of polling, he said. The filing of nomination papers for the second phase of polling to be held for 94 seats commenced on Friday and so far only two candidates have submitted their papers.

The last date of filing nominations for the second phase is October 16, 2020. Voting for the second phase will take place on November 3. The last round of voting will be held on November 7 and counting of votes will take place on November 10.

An official release said 23 cases have been registered for incidents related to the violation of the model code of conduct, 24 cases for misuse of Vehicles Act and six for violation of the provisions for the use of loudspeakers. A total of 49 cases have been registered for holding illegal meetings and 28 for others matters since the model code of conduct came into force on September 25.

It said 1005 illegal arms and weapons have been seized, while 14768 licensed arms have been deposited with the authorities and 1772 arms licenses cancelled. Total Rs 14.32 lakh cash and 8,79,246 litres of liquor have been seized so far, the release added.


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